The War on Drugs in the United States as well as around the world has failed. There are many politicians as well as citizens that will admittedly attest to this fact. Here are some shocking facts that you may not know about the United States War on Drugs. Every 19 seconds someone is arrested in the United States for violating a drug law. It is estimated that our federal government spent more than 15 billion dollars on the drug war in 2010. That means that approximately $500 was spent every second on the drug war that year.
In 2015, the federal government spent more than thirteen billion dollars on the drug war. If you look at the state and federal government spending on the drug war in 2015 combined, they spent more than 40 billion dollars. Another shocking truth about the war on drugs that many people do not realize is how it affects college students. It is estimated by the Drug Policy Alliance that over 200,000 students have lost federal aid eligibility due to drug convictions. The mass majority of these drug evictions were for simple marijuana possession. This is something that is thankfully now legal in some states.
As of November 17th of 2015, nearly 1.5 million people had been arrested for drug offenses in the U.S. alone that year. It is undoubtedly a fact that the War on Drugs was started due to racism and that it has continued to be a racist war based on the fact that African-American individuals are disproportionately arrested for drug-related crimes in comparison to Caucasians. This is despite the fact that statistics have shown that the consumption of illegal drugs as well as the trafficking of illegal drugs occurs at the same rate by both groups.
It is estimated that if the United States was to legalize tax and regulate illicit drugs similar to how they have tobacco and alcohol they could raise over forty-six billion dollars in tax revenue annually according to a paper released by The Cato Institute in 2010. These are just a few of the shocking facts surrounding the War on Drugs that is a major failure in the United States as well as around the world.